Science: Higher Education

Department for Education written question – answered on 5th April 2019.

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To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) entomology, (2) soil science, and (3) microbial science professors, there are at English universities.

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The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) collects and publishes statistics on staff at UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). Latest statistics refer to the academic year 2017/18.

Each staff member can be recorded as teaching and/or researching up to 3 academic disciplines[1]. Counts of the number of academic staff and professors involved in the most closely related academic disciplines to those requested have been provided in the table:

Full-person-equivalent[2] academic staff by current academic discipline at English HEIs for

Academic Year 2017/18

Academic discipline


All academic staff

C340 Entomology



F770 Soil Science



C500 Microbiology



C510 Applied Microbiology



Source: Department for Education analysis of the HESA Staff Record


Figures are rounded to the nearest 5 in line with HESA’s rounding strategy.

Staff can be recorded across more than one academic discipline, so rows in the table ought not to be summed together.

‘Professor’ indicates a member of staff holding a contract which aligns with the Universities and Colleges Employers Association contract level 5A 'Professor'. This may undercount professors because many will fall into more senior levels, e.g. Heads of department.

[1] Academic disciplines are categorised using the Joint Academic Coding System:

[2] The definition for full-person-equivalent is available from the HESA website:

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